All posts by Ali Amirmoayed

Mahdi or משיח?

According to Islamic sources, the Mahdi (Arabic: مهدي) is the ultimate saviour of humankind and the prophesied redeemer of the world. He is expected to emerge at near the end of times (i.e. before the Day of Judgment / Resurrection / Eschaton / in Arabic Yawm al-Qiyāmah يوم القيامة‎) to rule the world and to re-establish righteousness.

Generally speaking, the character of the Mahdi in Islam is very much similar to the Messiah in Judaism (known as Mashiach, in Hebrew: משיח). Both the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) and the Talmud (the written version of the Jewish oral law) refer to Mashiach (משיח). It could be argued believing in the Mashiach is one of the Jewish principles of faith. Number 12 of 13 Jewish principles of faith formulated by Maimonides is as follows:

אני מאמין באמונה שלמה בביאת המשיח, ואף על פי שיתמהמה עם כל זה אחכה לו בכל יום שיבוא

I believe with perfect faith in the coming of the Mashiach; and even though he may tarry, nonetheless, I wait every day for his coming.

Read this: Jewish_principles_of_faith, The_messiah and this: Messianic_Age

Praying for the arrival of the saviour (Mahdi in their language) is exactly what Shias do every day. Today is 15th of Shaban in Hijri calendar and so Shia Muslims across the world are celebrating their Imam Mahdi’s birthday and praying for his arrival. Watch these videos to get a sense of this Shia celebration:

In Persian:

In Arabic:

Persian Jews on news channels

Jews have lived in Persia for nearly 3,000 years. Their current status, according to Wikipedia (here), is as follows:

Iran’s Jewish community is officially recognized as a religious minority group by the government, and … they are allocated one seat in the Iranian ParliamentCiamak Moresadegh is the current Jewish member of the parliament, replacing Maurice Motamed in the 2008 election. In 2000, former Jewish MP Manuchehr Eliasi estimated that at that time there were still 60,000–85,000 Jews in Iran; most other sources put the figure at 25,000.The United States State Department estimated the number of Jews in Iran at 20,000–25,000 as of 2009.

Watch these videos produced by three different news channels:

Canadian CBC News:

Russian RT:

Australian SBS (Dateline programme)